Christmas is right around the corner! This means lots of holiday cheer, family, and gifts. Lots of gifts. This sounds great but if you’re not properly prepared you will end up blowing the budget you worked so hard to maintain throughout the year. Here are a few tips to help you get through the holidays without increasing your debt.
Create a Christmas Budget
Keep it simple by doing these two things:.
- Write down how much money you can save between now and Christmas day
- Figure out how much of that money you are willing to spend on Christmas gifts.
Make a list and check it twice
Write down a complete list of all the people you want to buy gifts for. This list should include family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, your favorite service providers (mailman, delivery boy, teachers, paperboy, etc), and anyone else you feel is deserving of a gift from you.
Once you’ve completed your list, look it over and remove anyone that you are unsure about. After that, separate the list into 3 groups:
Christmas cards – Everyone in this group will be receiving a thoughtful Christmas card instead of a gift.
Handcrafted gift – Everyone in this group will receive a unique handcrafted gift. These gifts to not have to be extremely detailed or time consuming. In fact, they can be as simple as a baked good like cookies or a cake, handmade ornament or a personalized coffee mug.
Paid gift – This is the group that directly affects your budget. Everyone is this group will receive a gift purchased with the money you have saved. Place the amount of money you are willing to spend for person on this list. For example, you may want to spend $100 on a joint gift for your parents, $50 on a gift for your sibling, and $25 on a gift for your co-worker. Just be sure not to overspend on after you set each amount.
Now, what are you waiting for? Follow these tips and start your Christmas shopping today!